Skip to content
January 13, 2016

The Cruisers & the Orphans

The kids from the orphanage on the lawn of the marina. That’s ‘house mom’ Veronica Gomez Garcia, who helped make it happen, in the top center.

Jane White
©Latitude 38 Media, LLC

Is there a group of people any more deserving of love and help than children who, for one reason or the other, don’t have parents or a family member they can live with and who cares for them? We don’t think so. As a result, we’d like to give a special shout out to Katrina Liana of Marina Riviera Nayarit in La Cruz, and local cruisers, who on January 6 put on a special King’s Day Party for the 25 children of Manos de Amor (Hands of Love) Orphanage. ‘Kat’, as she’s best known, founded the event six years ago when she was an active cruiser. Now that she works for the marina, she continues to head up the event, with the enthusiastic support of the marina.

The children were brought to the marina from the orphanage in Bucerias and given a free meal at the Marina Deli. Then they got to play with the marina’s many ‘boat kids’, doing things like making crafts and painting each others’ faces. Finally they were all given gifts in one of the 30 backpacks brought down from the States by cruisers Richard and Donna Pomeroy of the sailing vessel Flying Carpet.

One of the marina’s ‘boat kids’ begins to give her new friend some face paint. 

Jane White
©Latitude 38 Media, LLC

As much as the children loved the gifts, what they really appreciated was the attention and love of other humans. As Doña de Mallorca remarked, “I’ve never been hugged so hard in my life.”

Latitude 38 salutes everyone who helped bring a little sunshine into the lives of these innocent kids, who have started life having being dealt such a bad hand. We know this is just one of many cruiser programs to help the less fortunate in Mexico, so we also salute all of you who help in other similar events. The world is a better place because of your time and love.

2016 Sailing Resolutions

Jim Hopp, guiding his J/88 White Shadow through Raccoon Strait in 2015’s SSS Round the Rocks Race.

© 2016

In late 2015, we asked our readers for New Year’s sailing resolutions. Jim Hopp of San Carlos sails the J/88 White Shadow. Among his goals for 2016 are: 1) Sail at least once every week. 2) Get experience singlehanding in coastal ocean sailing. 3) Race in the Singlehanded Farallones. 4) Sail in at least one race that goes past Point Bonita: Half Moon Bay? Drake’s Bay? 5) Take five non-sailors sailing.

Sailing resolutions lived up to in 2015 included those of Andrew Rosen and Debra Adams from Boulder, CO. They explored the Pacific Northwest last summer aboard the Outbound 46 Lion’s Paw. "We had a great season cruising in Alaska via British Columbia and spent several days in the Broughtons on the way back," writes Andrew. The Broughtons are an island group on the north side of Vancouver Island. "We strongly recommend the various marinas in the Broughtons, which are very small operations surviving on a shoestring, so they definitely need the cruisers’ dollars. You also cannot go wrong docking at the North Island Marina in Port McNeill before or after crossing Queen Charlotte Sound. Great owners give a personal touch; they can fuel your boat right at your dock."

Success fishing by dinghy out of Echo Bay, BC, in August. Debra bought a one-day Canadian license. She quickly caught her limit of two coho, a 10- and a 15-pounder.

© 2016 Andrew Rosen

As they reflect upon 2015, Gregg and Anne Brickner are in Bend, OR, while their Hallberg-Rassy 36 True North is spending the winter at the Port of Kingston in Puget Sound. "We have enjoyed sailing in the Pacific Northwest since 1995," write the Brickners. "In 2013 we took True North down the West Coast, stopping in San Francisco, the Channel Islands, Catalina, and many other terrific places on our way to San Diego, where we joined the 2013 Baja Ha-Ha." The couple continued on to Manzanillo and the Sea of Cortez.

"But we had never crossed an ocean. So, in May 2015 a good friend joined us and we sailed from Cabo San Lucas to Honolulu. After getting ‘stuck’ in Hawaii for five weeks waiting for winds to build, another good crew joined us to circumnavigate Kauai and sail from Nawiliwili to Friday Harbor in the San Juan Islands. One outstanding memory of many: It was my watch, passing Neah Bay after entering Juan de Fuca Strait, about 2 a.m., and I sniffed the air and said to myself, "Ahh! It’s cedars! We’re home!"

The Brickners approach Diamond Head and Honolulu on their trip from Mexico to Hawaii. That’s the Sloop Tavern Yacht Club burgee. 

True North
©Latitude 38 Media, LLC

"So now, having finally crossed an ocean," says Gregg, "I can smile knowingly when I read in Latitude 38 about boats in the ARC having to sail dead downwind in 10 knots of breeze. True North never let us down and made us so very comfortable. No new gear needed. For 2016 we are planning to extend our northwest cruising grounds and spend a couple of months traveling to Haida Gwaii (formerly the Queen Charlotte Islands). We will probably return via the west coast of Vancouver Island, since we ‘only’ spent a month on that coast on our first trip."

"In the second year of my retirement from leading OCSC Sailing in Berkeley," writes Rich Jepsen of Alameda, "I added three great adventures, all of which I had been wanting to do for years. I joined the crew of a J/111 (Double Digit) after 25 years of racing a J/24 almost exclusively and am having the time of my life. I got to fly to the Naval Academy and spend two weeks teaching America’s most recent naval officers how to sail, then how to teach sailing, in two weeks. ‘What?!’ you ask. ‘How is that possible?’ Well, consider that our students were the smartest, most athletic you could imagine, all of whom have spent four years taking orders. Plus, Annapolis is often quite benign.

"Finally, I got to check off a longtime bucket-list item by sailing with very good friends Mike and Judy Sawyer, Larry and BJ Ledgerwood, and my lovely wife, Cecilia Trost, from San Francisco to Cabo as part of the Baja Ha Ha on the Island Packet 38 Honu."

In San Diego’s America’s Cup Harbor, the Honu crew model their Some Like It Hot shirts on Day One of Baja Ha-Ha XXII. Left to right: Larry and BJ Ledgerwood, Judy Sawyer (co-owner), Rich Jepsen and Mike Sawyer (co-owner).

©2016Latitude 38 Media, LLC

Jepsen’s resolutions for 2016 are: "1) To help our J/111 team leap at least one of our competitors for the season standings. 2) Sail the coast of Croatia with an OCSC flotilla. 3) Teach more sailing at OCSC. 4) Help Alameda Community Sailing Center grow by another 20% in its fourth year."

Weekend Racing Round-Up

With a blast from the shotgun, BYC’s Division A starts Saturday’s Midwinter race in the chilly drizzle.

©Latitude 38 Media, LLC

Berkeley YC’s penultimate Midwinter weekend featured two races in dying breeze, with intermittent raindrops on Saturday and intermittent sunshine on Sunday. The race committee called for a twice-around windward/leeward course on both days; when the southeasterly fizzled out on Saturday, the RC mercifully shortened course for all but Division A. An eventual flutter from the north flipped the course around but saved the day.

Sunday’s BYC Midwinters is popular with shorthanded sailors, such as Jindrich Dokonal on the Beneteau First 300 Grace. Half of the competitors on Sunday sail in one doublehanded and two singlehanded divisions.

©2016Latitude 38 Media, LLC
The Melges 24 fleet creep toward the finish of the second RegattaPRO race on Saturday in what photographer/volunteer Roxanne Fairbairn called a "float fest."

© 2016 Roxanne Fairbairn

On the west side of the Berkeley Circle, RegattaPRO hosted 43 competitors in six fleets for two races on gray, rainy Saturday. This year’s Winter One Design Series includes divisions for Moore 24s, Melges 24s, J/105s, J/120s, J/70s and J/24s. For standings, see Jibeset.

A wave from the J/29 L2O, competing in Sequoia YC’s Winter Series out of Redwood City on the Bay south of the San Mateo Bridge.

© Fabian Pease

On the same day, Sequoia YC’s Winter #3 sailed under cloudy skies with widely variable wind forecasts and a 2-knot ebb. The line was set so as to keep the pre-start maneuvering away from the ebb and daymarks. "With wind out of the south, 10 boats had a clean downwind start and immediately headed into deep water, popped their kites and rode the ebb out to B just south of the San Mateo Bridge," report fleet captains Cathy Moyer and Kathy Conte. "The fleet then headed for the shallows to get current relief on the long beat and shorter run to the finish. The wind never clocked around, staying light and out of the south for the entire race, yielding flat water."

We’ll have more on all of the above in the February issue of Latitude 38.

Medicine Man’s owner Bob Lane (behind helm with hat) watches as skipper Lisa Meier (at the wheel) drives his Andrews 63 across the finish line of the Two Gates Pursuit Race.

© Rick Roberts

On a day that dawned with only a whisper of a breeze, Long Beach YC was able to pull off the Two Gates Pursuit Race. After an hour-and-a-half postponement, the race committee started the first boat on a 5.17-mile course instead of the usual 13.2-mile course, which would have had most boats finishing in the dark. Skipper Lisa Meier took first overall in the 29-boat fleet and first in Class A on the Andrews 63 Medicine Man. “This was really a privilege,” Meier said, “to have an offer to sail with Medicine Man’s crew, who are some of sailing’s best.” Medicine Man’s owner, Bob Lane, said that the boat is geared for Southern California light-air sailing.

The 65th Corinthian Midwinters kick off this Saturday and Sunday, with starts in the Knox area west of Angel Island and racing on Central San Francisco Bay. Cal 20s and Express 27s have enough entries for division starts. Other one designs are possible, if five or more boats sign up. Divisions also include SF Bay 30s, sportboats, multihulls, and two for non-spinnaker boats, as well as numerous PHRF classes. Saturday night will feature the usual raft-up at the docks in downtown Tiburon, a band, and a BBQ dinner. We’ll report on the race weekend in the February Latitude.

On Friday afternoon, Spindrift 2 crossed the finish line between the Créac’h lighthouse, France, and the Lizard lighthouse, Cornwall.
In the December issue of Latitude 38 (pages 65-67) and in ‘Lectronic Latitude on November 20 and January 8, we told you about controversial plans to redevelop the Alameda Marina, on the Estuary side of the island.
The international sailing community has lost one of its best-loved father figures. On Sunday Australian billionaire Bob Oatley, 87, succumbed to a longtime illness.